Design on the new guides for Maps and Tosca has started with the aim of having the upgraded instruments running sometime in 2016.
MAPS was the first chopper spectrometer designed specifically for measuring excitations in single crystals. It took its first neutrons in 1998, and since then its science programme has broadened to include catalysis and molecular spectroscopy as well as superconductors, quantum and model magnetic systems. It was built without a guide, and this is now limiting its effectiveness at thermal and sub-thermal neutron energies. Provision of a guide will enhance the neutron flux at these energies by an order of magnitude, as well as providing flux increases across the higher energy range of the instrument. Installation of a new disk chopper is also planned to improve the instrument background.
Tosca is used for vibrational spectroscopy, mainly in chemical studies including catalysis, hydrogen storage and gas separation materials but also including water-related investigations in a variety of systems plus charge storage battery materials. It has been operational since 2002. As with MAPS, provision of a neutron guide will provide order of magnitude flux increases enabling greater sensitivity and use of smaller samples, enhanced parametric studies and more rapid counting times generally.
The Maps, Tosca and Mari instruments were reviewed by an external panel of neutron experts in 2013. The review report can be downloaded here.